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AFC North roundup: Ravens lose LB Courtney Upshaw, Steelers looking to add OL depth

The Browns dominated the AFC North headlines in recent days, signing former Washington quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III last week.

Prior to that announcement Thursday afternoon, Cleveland first-year coach Hue Jackson fielded a flurry of Griffin-related questions (among others) at the NFL's annual owners' meetings in Boca Raton, Florida. Jackson, who said he believes the former Offensive Rookie of the Year has humbled himself after four seasons of highs and lows with the Redskins.

If you missed something, we’ve got you covered.

But here's what else happened around the league.


While Baltimore has been able to pick up a handful of big names in free agency — including former Chargers safety Eric Weddle, wide receiver Mike Wallace and tight end Ben Watson — the Ravens watched Courtney Upshaw sign a new deal with the Atlanta Falcons on Friday.

Upshaw — who has played all four seasons with Baltimore — was the team's starting outside linebacker and top draft pick in 2012. He totaled 51 tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles last year.


As Pittsburgh looks to add depth to its offense line, the Steelers hosted veteran guard Geoff Schwartz over the weekend, according to ESPN and other media reports.

Schwartz (who's the older brother of former Browns tackle Mitchell Schwartz) was released by the Giants after two seasons. He started 13 games over that span — including 11 last year.


On the heels of striking new deals with starting defensive backs Adam Jones and George Iloka, Bengals president Mike Brown said he believes Cincinnati is in good shape despite significant losses on the other side of the ball.

"A lot of teams, in my opinion, would take where we are to where they are," Brown told and reporters at the NFL owners' meeting last week. "We preserved what we could in the secondary. We're pretty solid."

The Bengals also were able to retain reserve linebacker Vincent Rey, who is expected to start in place of the suspended Vontaze Burfict. "We got back Vinny Rey and that was important for us with Burfict's situation," Brown said.

But Cincinnati will have to replace starting receivers in Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu, who left for new teams in free agency.

"We'll have to fill it in. It is something we are working on," Brown said. "We'll work on it as we continue to go along. Free agency isn't over and we also have the draft coming up."

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